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Column: Another deflating late-season loss underlines what’s at stake for USC

The question entering this weekend was whether these Trojans could have elevated basketball at USC in a nonpandemic year, the team finally enjoying the kind of season that was envisioned when Andy Enfield was hired.

Now, in the wake of a deflating 81-72 defeat to an unremarkable Arizona team on Saturday, the Trojans have to be asking themselves something entirely different.

Are they really the best team Enfield has coached in his eight seasons at USC? Or are they bound to repeat the cycle of crashing and burning after looking as if they could make college basketball important again on this stretch of Figueroa Street?